Impressive weekend has the Ice Owls at No. 1 in the Region
RYAN MORGAN — Managing Editor
The Ice Owls skated past Wagner to an 11-3 home victory Saturday night scoring early and often to secure the number one ranking in the region.
“It was just another step to solidifying the number one position,” said Head Coach Steve Novador. “If we keep playing like this we’ll be unstoppable. It was really good to see the guys moving the puck so well.”
Wagner couldn’t capitalize on their first of many power plays just five minutes into the game, but the Owls quickly netted their first point of many.
“It was all in all a good effort from the whole team. It was the first time we ever saw this team so we just did what we always do,” said Matt D’ Amato, who tallied five goals and three assists in the contest.
A team effort it was, with six different players scoring goals. Freshman Justin Macgregor put in two goals. Steve Rosenkrantz added one goal and seven assists to the mix. Mike Penna, Matt Garafolo, and Vince Berti each had one goal. It was Berti’s first goal in his career as an Owl.
Southern scored five times in the second period, beginning with Penna’s goal just a few minutes in. Shortly after, Wagner put in their first goal in a 5-3 power play against Southern. Less than two minutes later, D’Amato raised the lead to 5-1.
With seven minutes to go in the period, Wagner capitalized on another power play making the score 5-2. Southern regained momentum and built an 8-2 lead by the end of the period.
D’Amato and Novador both credited freshman Macgregor for stepping up and making plays happen. Novador said the freshman really helps the line and takes a beating for the guys in front of him.
“I remember coming into my first game with the line and Matty [D’Amato] told me to just get in front of the net. Since then it’s been unbelievable setting them up and watching them do the magic,” said Macgregor.
Mike Santini took over as goalie in the third period in his first appearance of the year.
“It was good to see Santini come in for his first game and get some shots,” said Novador.
Santini made 14 out of 15 saves in his first appearance. Wagner scored their third and final goal of the night before Southern put in three more goals for safekeeping in the period.
Captain Joe Innamorato described the feeling of being ranked number one after Saturday’s win.
“It’s been a great feeling all year. Being ranked number one in the region is huge for the program, but at the same time, we know that now we have that target on our backs. And other teams are going to want to beat us, so we just need to try and work harder now in order to stay number one,” said Innamorato.
The Owls traveled to Staten Island to play Wagner again on Sunday, winning their third game of the weekend 10-4; it was the Owls’ thirteenth win of the season. D’Amato and Rosenkrantz were standouts offensively again. D’Amato added six more goals to his weekend total and Rosenkrantz made two goals with seven assists.
“We’re not the best yet,” said Innamorato. “We won’t be the best until we bring home a national championship in March.”